When you’ve spent any time listening to Johnny Money’s American Recordings albums, you’ve most likely encountered a phenomenon that comes up just a few instances there: one artist protecting one other artist’s songs with the unique artist alongside for the trip. Money did so with each Tom Petty and Will Oldham, and one other music legend — Dolly Parton, on this case — appears to have embraced this idea for her forthcoming album Rockstar.
It’s not stunning to see that Parton might get musicians starting from Steve Perry to Miley Cyrus to Debbie Harry to look on, respectively, her takes on “Open Arms,” “Wrecking Ball” and “Coronary heart of Glass.” Parton is as shut as we will get to a universally beloved musician proper now, and the roster of visitor stars on the album displays that. Arguably the highest-profile visitor stars current are two members of The Beatles — Paul McCartney and Ringo Starr — who joined Parton (and Peter Frampton and Mick Fleetwood) for a model of “Let It Be.”
This model is, nicely, about what you’d anticipate from Dolly Parton protecting “Let It Be.” It doesn’t characteristic an IDM interlude or a shift into Merzbow-esque harsh noise; it’s a well-recognized ballad coated by somebody who is aware of her manner round a ballad. In comparison with Phil Spector’s manufacturing on the model of “Let It Be” heard on the Beatles album of the identical title, that is comparatively understated — nearer in tone to, say, the Glyn Johns combine.
Regardless of her high-profile visitors, the actual purpose to hearken to this music isn’t their presence or the best way this model of “Let It Be” is organized. As a substitute, it’s Parton’s voice, which has all the time been expressive however has develop into extra weathered with age. McCartney was 27 when The Beatles recorded “Let It Be;” Parton is 77, and she or he brings that age and expertise to bear in her method to the music.
It’s price mentioning right here that Parton’s recording profession overlapped with that of The Beatles by just a few years — her debut album Hiya, I’m Dolly was launched two months earlier than Magical Thriller Tour hit file shops throughout the U.S. in 1967. There’s loads of musical historical past on this cowl of “Let It Be” — and a way of one thing coming full circle.
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